How Insurance Protects Your Calgary Cleaning Business

How Insurance Protects Your Calgary Cleaning Business

January 25, 2023 / 5 mins read

Your customers rely on you for expert cleaning. You don’t want a mess on your hands by not being protected against the on-the-job risks you could face.

You need to make sure that your cleaning business or janitorial business is protected from any liability claims. You’ll need a cleaning insurance package that’s customized for your business.

Ask your Western business insurance expert about what kind of cleaning insurance package your Calgary residential or commercial cleaning service needs.

These cleaning services should have a cleaning insurance package:

  • Office cleaning
  • Residential cleaning
  • Apartment cleaning
  • Dry cleaning
  • Window cleaning
  • Move-out/Move-in cleaning
  • Apartment cleaning
  • Laundry services
  • Car cleaning

What is a cleaning insurance package?

You need a cleaning service insurance package to help protect your business from the different types of risks that you are exposed to regularly. What happens if you or an employee are accused of theft by a client? What if equipment or furniture is damaged?

Your cleaning insurance package can provide coverage for risks such as an equipment breakdown, theft, property damage, or a fire.

A cleaning insurance package can help protect you from these 3 common claims:

  1. What happens if you or an employee are accused of theft by a client?
  2. What if furniture is damaged?
  3. What happens if an office customer slips and falls on a wet floor because you forgot to put a caution sign in place?

Here’s a quick insurance checklist for your Calgary cleaning business:

  • Do you have the best business insurance rate for your cleaning business?
  • Do you know what risks you are covered for, or not?
  • Do you have the right amount for your deductible and regularly review it to make sure it’s the right amount for you?
  • Is the number of employees up to date?
  • Do you know the value of your equipment and is it properly insured?
  • Have you thought about the consequences of cyberthieves hacking your business?

What’s in a cleaning business package?

Commercial General Liability Insurance (CGL): The most important type of insurance you need as a cleaning or janitorial business is commercial general liability.

Accidents can happen and commercial general liability insurance protects you from claims such as third-party bodily injury and property damage related to your cleaning business activities.

Someone could be injured when they slip and fall on a wet floor, an employee could damage a customer’s property, or a fire could be caused by circumstances related to your business.

This type of insurance helps cover the expenses associated with these types of accidents and many others. It pays for medical and legal expenses and for replacing damaged property. Without this type of insurance, you would be responsible for paying those costs out of your own pocket.

Your CGL policy also helps protect you from libel, slander, copyright infringement, and false advertising allegations.

How much CGL coverage do I need for my cleaning business?

Many commercial general liability insurance policies start at $1 million, but you will need to assess the risks that your cleaning or janitorial business will face.

It’s recommended to have at least $2 million in general liability coverage and some businesses need up to $5 million or more in coverage, depending on their size and the kind of work they do.

Surety bond: Once you accept a job from a customer, you are obligated to complete it. A surety bond is a type of business insurance that will pay your customer if you fail to complete a job.

If you go out of business, go bankrupt, or otherwise fail to finish the job, your customer can file a claim to get financial compensation with your insurer to have their costs covered, up to a maximum amount.

You may be required to have a surety bond before accepting a contract. Only companies licensed by the Surety Association of Canada may offer you a surety bond.

Fidelity Bond: Clients will likely ask if your residential or commercial cleaning business is bonded.

A third-party bond, or a fidelity bond, protects your clients if an employee of your business steals money or property from one of your clients.

Ask your Western business insurance expert to go over surety and fidelity bonds with you and how they can protect your cleaning business.

Commercial Property Insurance: Whether you rent or own your location for your cleaning business, commercial property insurance can provide financial coverage in the case of a fire that destroys or damages your business property and its contents.

Commercial property insurance also protects your place of business or office and its contents from damage or loss related to severe weather, theft, and vandalism.

This type of insurance typically includes flood insurance, but what if there’s a heavy rain and the sewers back up and your cleaning business office is flooded?

You should consider adding sewer backup or overland flood coverages, which standard business insurance policies typically do not cover.

Equipment Breakdown Insurance: Your cleaning business may have expensive electrical and mechanical equipment required for your work.

This type of insurance provides coverage for property damage from the sudden and accidental breakdown of insured equipment not automatically covered by a standard commercial property policy. You’ll need to have a list of the equipment and how much it’s worth.

Business Interruption Insurance: Business interruption insurance supports you when your cleaning business can’t operate due to a covered loss. This type of insurance can be the difference between recovering from a loss and closing permanently.

There are many losses that can force your cleaning business to shut down. Some examples include:

  • Damage to your equipment from fire or vandalism
  • A major reduction in revenue due to a client/supplier facing losses of their own
  • A disruption in your supply chain

Business interruption insurance can help with expenses such as:

  • Payroll
  • Rent
  • Utilities
  • Property taxes
  • Alarm monitoring
  • Relocation of your business

Tools and Equipment Insurance: This type of insurance may pay to replace or repair your lost, stolen, or damaged equipment and tools that you regularly use for cleaning, such as: mops and buckets, brooms and dusters, vacuums, steam cleaners, floor waxer and buffer.

Anything valued at less than $1,500 is considered a tool and anything above that amount is considered equipment.

Professional Liability Insurance: Professional liability insurance provides coverage for claims against negligence, errors, or failure to deliver service. If a client was not satisfied with the quality of cleaning services that you provided, then your business may be held liable.

Pollution Liability Insurance: This type of coverage covers the cost of damages to a client’s premises or to their health caused by pollution or toxic substances that you have used, such as a chemical cleaning agent.

Cyber Insurance: Your Calgary cleaning business may store client data and credit card transactions that you do with your clients.

What if your system is hacked by cyberthieves? Without cyber insurance, you will have to pay out of your pocket for the cost of restoring your system if it is hacked. You may also be liable for damages to third parties whose information has been stolen and you may have to pay for notification expenses to inform clients affected by a breach.

Commercial Auto Insurance: If you have a business car that you use for your cleaning business, it won’t be covered by your personal car insurance policy.

What do I do if my cleaning business has an insurance claim?

  • Contact your insurer immediately after any business-related mishap. Waiting to file a claim can confuse insurers about the severity of the damages to your business.
  • Know your policy so that when you contact your insurer you are familiar with what will be covered or not.
  • Document the damage. Take photos right away and write down what happened.
  • Do not throw away damaged goods after taking photos. Keep the physical evidence so that your adjustor can see it.
  • Do not invite lawsuits. Don’t say anything that could be used against you, especially if you aren’t sure what happened.
  • Be honest about what your damaged property is worth. Damaged commercial property is generally valued according to its actual cash value or replacement value.

Western Insurance has licensed BUSINESS INSURANCE EXPERTS to get your Calgary cleaning business the right insurance package. Our experts are available now to help you navigate the business insurance journey to protect your cleaning business.

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